Mikkel Kessler received a rocking reception from his home crowd in Denmark today when he conducted an open training session in the city centre of Herning. The Viking Warrior (41-1, 31 KOs) puts his WBA Super-Middleweight Title on the line against mandatory challenger Gusmyr Perdomo on Saturday. U.S. premium TV network SHOWTIME will be airing the fight on a special Saturday primetime edition of ShoBox: The New Generation at 10 p.m. ET/PT (same day tape delay). “It is great to be here and I look forward to fighting in front of my fans,” Kessler said. “There is a lot of pressure on me, especially with the Super Six tournament coming up, but I love pressure. This fight is of tremendous importance for me. Perdomo has worked very hard to get his chance and he is challenging me for the title. But I will defeat him. I am in great shape.”
Kessler is set to take on Andre Ward, whose September 12 fight against Shelby Pudwill will also be aired on SHOWTIME, in the first round of the Super Six World Boxing Classic. However, his full focus is on Perdomo. “I am only thinking about him,” Kessler added. “I am taking one step at a time.” When asked about the fact that Perdomo (16-2, 10 KOs) has never been stopped before, Kessler replied with a smile: “Then I will have to be the first one to do just that.”
The Danish national hero only underwent a light work-out inside the ring on the town square in Herning, which is located 200 miles north of Hamburg and 190 miles west of Copenhagen. “I am ready for Perdomo,” he said before leaving the ring and signing lots of autographs.
Perdomo did not spend much time in the ring either. After a quick round of padwork with Michael Timm, he was done. “Mikkel is a great champion and I really enjoy watching him in the ring,” Timm said. “But we are here to win the title.” And the challenger added: “I have worked very hard. Kessler is a great boxer but this is the biggest fight of my career. We have analysed him closely and know how to beat him. But that will remain our secret until Saturday.”
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